Friday, October 14, 2011

Praying on Rocks, Hills and Mountaintops

Posted By: Robin Wadle
I‘ve been thinking a lot about prayer the last few weeks and what a great thing it is.  I just first want to say that God is so good and he is so faithful in answering prayers. How do I know this? Well… I pray. Am I perfect? No. I have learned that if you really want to see the goodness and the faithfulness of God you must pray. Pray specifically, pray often and pray expectantly. Now has God answered all of my prayers exactly as I have prayed them in the exact way that I want Him to. No. Hardly ever does that happen but what I see the most is God answering prayers in better ways. Sometimes this leads to more difficulty in my life but it also leads me to love Him and know Him more. I have my go-to verses for prayer that have drastically shaped the way I pray and what I pray for and who I pray for. 

If you know me you know that I have some struggles with anxiety. Prayer is a way that helps me to deal with anxiety (see Phil 4). But it has also been a struggle to see God the way he is and not be anxious that He is going to answer some prayer in the worst way possible. A good friend of mine shared this verse with me a couple years ago and something just clicked. 

For the Lord will not cast off forever, but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion, according to the abundance of his steadfast love; for he does not willingly afflict or grieve the children of men. (NIV)

This verse helped shape my view that God is NOT out to get me. I know this may sound basic but I have found myself being scared to pray for certain things thinking “oh no what is God going to do to me?” The thing is, God loves me so much and sent his Son to die for ME. He took on the punishment. Now that I have accepted the gift of salvation through Christ Jesus and put my faith in him., that punishment is gone. Now all God wants to do is make me into his son! (see 2 Cor. 3:18)

Another thing God teaches through prayer is how to be faithful with something. My natural personality is not faithful. Naturally I don’t really care about much but God has used prayer as a way to teach me to be faithful. (again… I am not perfect). Because God is faithful he wants us to be faithful. Just like how God is loving, he wants us to be loving. Now I am NO expert on the ins and outs of how exactly prayer works and how it works with God’s will or what not but something I do know is that God uses prayer one way or another. 

At the end of Philemon Paul states “One more thing- please prepare a guest room for me, for I hoping that God will answer your prayers and let me return to you soon.” (v.22) I think it’s so cool that Paul wanted to act in such a way that lined up with their prayers. By preparing a guest room they were acting in faith that Paul might one day come back to them. 

I LOVE the verse Colossians 4:2 - "Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving." Isn’t that amazing? God wants us to watch to see him working AND to watch for things and people to be praying for! All with a thankful heart towards God no matter what happens."

Also in Ephesians 6:18-19 it says - "Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. And pray for me, too. Pray Ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain the mysterious plan that the Good News if for Jews and for Gentiles alike. I am in chains now, still preaching the message as God’s ambassador. So pray that I will keep on speaking boldly for him, as I should."

So those are some of my thoughts on prayer. I could go on but I have found these verses to be an encouragement in my prayer life and I hope they can encourage you too!

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